Octavius Catto, Tasting Freedom - authors Murray Dubin and Daniel Biddle, with Erica Dunbar

On September 26th, a sculpture of Octavius V. Catto designed by Branly Cadet - the first statue on public land in the city of Philadelphia to honor an African-American - was installed.

On Monday, October 2nd, at 6 pm, join us for a timely reading and discussion with writers devoted to Catto's legacy and the history of Black Philadelphia.

Daniel R. Biddle and Murray Dubin
read and discuss 
Tasting Freedom: Octavius Catto and
the Battle for Equality in Civil War America

Erica Dunbar, author of 
Never Caught: The Washingtons' Relentless Pursuit of their Runaway Slave, Ona Judge

"Octavius Valentine Catto was a second baseman on Philadelphia’s best black base-ball team, a teacher at the city’s finest black school, an activist who fought in the state capital and on the streets for equal rights, and an orator who shared the stage with Frederick Douglass. With his murder during an election-day race riot in 1871, the nation lost a civil rights pioneer—one who risked his life a century before the events that took place in Selma and Birmingham.

Tasting Freedom presents the little-known stories of Catto and the men and women who struggled to change America. This book will change your understanding of civil rights history."

“…a towering, persuasive narrative that recounts the precarious condition of blacks in nineteenth-century Philadelphia, the determination with which they expected change, the preparation and skill necessary for African American leaders of the period, and the wealthy heritage they bequeathed to their progeny.” - Journal of American History, 9/2011
Daniel R. Biddle,The Philadelphia Inquirer‘s Pennsylvania editor, has worked in nearly every phase of newspaper reporting and editing. His investigative stories on the courts won a Pulitzer Prize and other national awards. He and his wife, Cynthia Roberts, live in Philadelphia.

Murray Dubin is the author of South Philadelphia: Mummers, Memories and the Melrose Diner and was a reporter and editor at The Philadelphia Inquirer for 34 years before leaving the newspaper in 2005. He lives in Philadelphia with his wife, Libby Rosof.
Erica Armstrong Dunbar is the Charles and Mary Beard Professor of History at Rutgers University. She also serves as Director of the Program in African American History at the Library Company of Philadelphia. Her first book, A Fragile Freedom: African American Women and Emancipation in the Antebellum City was published by Yale University Press in 2008. She is also the author of Never Caught: The Washingtons' Relentless Pursuit of Their Runaway Slave Ona Judge.
Event date: 
Monday, October 2, 2017 - 6:00pm to 7:30pm
Event address: 
130 S. 34th Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104-6304
Tasting Freedom: Octavius Catto and the Battle for Equality in Civil War America Cover Image
ISBN: 9781592134663
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Temple University Press - October 2nd, 2017

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